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Avatar universal

My soon to be 5yrs old son doesn't listen and sleeps walk

I have been dealing with his misbehavior since he was 3 1/2 yrs old. He used to be quite and behave until then. The sleep walking&talking/crying/tantrums started around that age as well.  Now he is occasionally sleep walking but he is still not listening and misbehaving at home. I thought at 1st that it was the result of his father coming back from Afghanistan and then having a baby in the house shortly after but I think it is far more than that (his father has been home for 2yrs now and his little sister is almost 2yrs old). I think he is adjusted to both situation but he just chooses to misbehave at home. (He is behaving in school.) He refused to eat.  Eating is a battle for us.  We have to argue and go through crying and him threatening me that he will throw up just to stop... even after just 3 spoonful.  Everything is a challenge from brushing his teeth, going to bed, peeing in the toilet (he pees all over the place just to upset me - he will pee on the trash can by the toilet - he will put garbage next to the garbage can, laundy by the laundry basket and so on).  I am desperate to understand him. I have tried everything from rewards for good behavior, facing the wall, and even little spanking… nothing works.  All he does is cry and throw a tantrum when he doesn’t want to listen or get something he wants… it is his way out of everything… I don’t give in easily either… I will let him cry and have his tantrum moment but sometimes he will just go on for 30 minutes before realizing that I am not giving in… then he will stop or take a break before starting all over again…I feel like I am in an endless cycle... I didn’t experience this with his older brother (turning 8). I need to understand him… please help!  


This discussion is related to 5 Year old boy.
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Avatar universal
Sleepwalking/ sleep issues are indicative of a child who suffers from anxiety.  If I had to guess, I think your child has some extreme anxiety issues that are tied up somehow with his home life-- and you are right you are in a continual pattern/ cycle.

To break it, you need to do a few things:
- you mention everything is a challenge/ argument-- stop arguing -- he does what he needs to do when he needs to do it, or he goes to time out-- every time-- and if he won't be quiet, then put the time out place somewhere where he won't bother anyone else, and ignore him until the tantrum is gone-- this is the only thing to do with a tantrum, really. He can only get your attention when he is not behaving this way. No one in your family should pay him attention during a tantrum.
- you need to seek help from his physicial and/or a mental health practioner. This practioner can give you advice on how to help your child deal with all the negative feelings that he has, and how to help you break the cycle-- so that you can work on repairing the relationship you have. It sounds like at a critical time in his growth his father was not around- and he had you to himself. And then his father came back and then he had a new sibling and he lost his special place with you and got mad-- and then sort of stayed mad - the whole vicious cycle thing. It will take some healing time to resolve I think and I think a professional should guide your family in this process.
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